How-To: Poached Eggs

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poached eggs, eggs, egg sandwich Last week was my first week at the Center of Nutrition Policy and Promotion (CNPP) for my dietetic internship.  I’m learning all about the government’s role in nutrition education and policy and am working on some really cool projects, like MyPlate.  However, CNPP is housed in a highly secure government building.  One that requires background checks, finger printing and endless forms to fill out. Well on Thursday…let’s just say my partner and I were “removed” from the building and asked to work from home since it’s against the “rules” to have interns working there until they are fully cleared by security, IT and who knows who else.  That’s a story for another day.

Now that I’m working from home, I’m finding this situation is quite nice (I’m currently wearing sweats, snow boots and a comfy sweater) and allows me to work without many distractions.  I’ve also been enjoying a more slow and indulgent morning breakfast routine.  Today I thought it’d be fun to cook something exciting and rather luxurious (now that I’m don’t have to rush out the door by 7:30 am).

poached eggs, eggs, egg sandwich, poaching eggs, poached egg recipe Poached eggs!  Healthy, delicious and very, very exciting.  I could technically make these on any weekday morning.  It’s really not a time consuming recipe.  But it can be a bit scary if you’ve never made them before.  And I just feel that a breakfast of poached eggs deserves a little more time than my normal egg sandwich being shoved in my mouth on the elevator ride down to the car.

PoachedEggs1 Poached eggs aren’t as hard or scary as they may seem.  Here’s a few tips to make your egg poaching experience go smoothly:

  • Start with really fresh eggs – as fresh as possible.  Fresher eggs have a tighter white and it doesn’t spread out as far compared to older eggs.
  • Don’t have fresh eggs?  No problem!  A cap full of white vinegar (or apple cider, or white wine…just not balsamic) will help.  The acid from the vinegar helps keep the whites of the eggs together.
  • Simmer the water…do not boil!  Rapid boiling will absolutely destroy the entire egg.  When you see the bubbles start coming off the bottom of the pan quickly, go ahead and drop in the egg and keep an eye on the water.  See picture above.
  • Create a whirlpool in the water.  By stirring the water in large circles several times creates a mini whirlpool in the center of the water.  Drop your eggs right in the center and the circular motion of the water helps wrap the egg white around itself.  Very cool tip!

Try out these tips and follow my super simple recipe for poached eggs and you’ll have a wonderfully indulgent breakfast in just minutes!  I promise!

Like making poached eggs?  What tips do you have for new cooks?  What’s your favorite way to serve them?


  1. Kristen

    February 7, 2013 at 10:23 am

    I have only attempted poached eggs once and they ended up a white, feathery mess. I am lucky that my family’s palate runs toward mundane scrambled eggs.
    Your instructions sound great. I may have to try again.

    • mewinebrenner

      February 7, 2013 at 10:26 am

      Haha – they definitely can be scary! But, the whirlpool effect really helps out!

  2. carrian

    February 7, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    I am the worst at poached eggs! Thank you for sharing this. Oh and working from home? THE BEST. Yoga pants it is. 😉

    • mewinebrenner

      February 7, 2013 at 1:22 pm

      Yea working from home was fun…but back in the office today!!

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